The Development of the Drama

By Brander Matthews | Go to book overview

IV.
THE MEDIEVAL DRAMA

I

THE Greeks, from the rudest beginnings, and by the aid of their incomparable instinct for form, brought to perfection a lofty type of tragedy and an original kind of comedy. The Latins, who had at least the germ of a comic drama of their own, were proud to borrow the comedy of the Greeks, altho in their hands it could not but be sadly sterile. In the stalwart days of the Roman commonwealth the drama seems to have had scant encouragement in the capital, either from the men of culture or from the coarser populace. When at last the empire solidified itself upon the ruins of the republic, and the eagles of Rome were borne almost to the confines of the world, the cosmopolitan inhabitants of this immense realm were never educated to appreciate the calm pleasures of the theater. They were encouraged to prefer the fierce joy of the chariotrace, the brutal delight of the arena, and the poignant ecstasy of the gladiatorial combat. The sole

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The Development of the Drama
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • Preface v
  • Contents vii
  • I - The Art of the Dramatist 1
  • II - Greek Tragedy 38
  • III - Greek and Roman Comedy 74
  • IV - The Medieval Drama 107
  • V - The Drama in Spain 147
  • VI - The Drama in England 186
  • VII - The Drama in France 227
  • VIII - The Drama in the Eighteenth Century 263
  • IX - The Drama in the Nineteenth Century 296
  • X - The Future of the Drama 325
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